As the last grading period of the school year gets underway, one thing many school administrators are thinking about is enrollment for next school year. It is never too early to put thought into student retention – after all, the financial benefit to your school of retaining a student vs. bringing in a new one is significant. Here are four tips that you can use to help set up a clear process for aiding in student retention:
Designate a specific person at your school to be the retention coordinator. This person can help address student and parent concerns throughout the school year so that their concerns get addressed and they feel as though the school cares about their needs. Not feeling appreciated or cared for is one of the biggest reasons families choose to leave a school and addressing this head-on is a great step. Additionally, it would be a good idea to have your retention coordinator be someone who is not involved in grading, finances or other areas of the school that could be considered a conflict of interest, like teachers or club sponsors, so that students and families are comfortable talking opening with this person without fearing repercussions.
Spend time looking over your roster and identify the families you (or your staff) feel are the most likely to leave the school. Try to figure out why that might be and if intervention could be useful. Sometimes something as simple as a principal calling home to congratulate a student on a good grade or check in when he or she is sick can make all the difference.
Survey your families to gauge areas of strength and weakness within your school. If you’re not sure why families are leaving or what the areas of satisfaction and dissatisfaction are, conducting a survey can shed some light on these ideas. Online anonymous surveys allow your families to complete them at their convenience and without worrying about speaking their mind. Most of all, it is a relatively inexpensive way to get some insight into the minds of your students and parents.
Keep consistent, personalized communication with parents. Sharing updates and communicating with parents regularly helps address questions before they develop into problems. With a school management system like Twine, you can easily keep parents in the loop on student achievements, grades, attendance, and school events with just a click of a button.
At Twine, we are excited about helping schools, passionate about transforming learning and focused on improving student achievement. We are proud to provide technology solutions that help schools achieve their goals. Want to see Twine in action? Contact an expert and we’ll show you how we can help improve your parent communication, making families more satisfied and connected to your school. Contact us.